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SB 81: Recognize Buttocks and Inner Thighs as Zones of Criminal Sexual Contact

Pierre’s most awkward meeting this week happens tomorrow morning, January 20, when Senate Judiciary meets at 8 a.m. in Room 413 of the Capitol to hear Senate Bill 81, Senator Helene Duhamel’s (R-32/Rapid City) proposal to revise the definition of sexual contact.

Current sex-offense statute (SDCL 22-22-7.1) defines sexual contact as “any touching, not amounting to rape, whether or not through clothing or other covering, of the breasts of a female or the genitalia or anus of any person with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of either party.” Senate Bill 81 reorders and enumerates terms, but it also adds “buttocks” and “inner thighs” to the state’s recognized erogenous zones.

Federal statute already includes buttocks and inner thighs as areas of sexual contact. The federal definition of sexual contact also includes the groin, which is left out of SB 81. Under federal law, sexual contact encompasses the touching of any person’s breast, not just that of a female. And while South Dakota law limits the intent behind sexual contact to arousing or gratifying sexual desires, federal law includes intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, or degrade any person through the such touching.

Want to make Senate Judiciary really awkward tomorrow? Let’s get someone to ask Senator Duhamel why her bill still leaves South Dakota with more permissive sexual contact laws than the federal government.


  1. larry kurtz 2022-01-19 07:09

    What prevents interns and other people concerned for their safety from wearing body cams in Pierre’s predatory environment?

  2. Ryan 2022-01-19 08:30

    wait so as a man my nipples are in the public domain?


  3. John Dale 2022-01-19 08:49

    Given the well documented biological differences between men and women in terms of sexuality (men activated by sight, women by touch), this is a stupid bill.

    It is a little less stupid if we ban yoga pants (I am not in favor of this since I tolerate this visual sexual assault without feeling like I’m cheating on my wife).

  4. Loren 2022-01-19 09:20

    Once again, a Republican interested in “erogenous zones”! How many times can I ask the question, “What is it with the GOP fixation on sex?” Do I sense a pent up frustration? ;-)

  5. Mark Anderson 2022-01-19 10:05

    Jezz, NOW I’ll have to give up my Masseuse therapy training.

  6. 96Tears 2022-01-19 13:49

    Welcome to Senator Bill Napoli’s greatest hits! Where were you in 2006 when you first heard this tune from Boy Genius Billy the Nap on … what defines a rape victim?

    “A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.”

    Ms. Duhamel’s meager ivory tower view marks an improvement on Bill’s viewpoints, but, taking Cory’s suggestion, it would be awkward and hilarious to ask her why she left out parts that were covered in the federal statute. Are body parts that unique in South Dakota? I’m afraid there are still a lot more of Great Medieval Thinkers in the GOP caucus like Bill Napoli than elite do-gooders like Helene Duhamel. Watch for SB 81 to be killed or watered down to pass muster with meatheads. Nothing’s funnier than a Republican sex talk.

    But wait! A recent article in Politico finds Nappy Bill back in the saddle as a national expert on Kristi Noem’s appeal to similarly-minded neanderthals.

    “She got on the Trump bandwagon and she completely changed,” Napoli said. “Either she went to Trump school or whatever Trump had rubbed off on her, or she had a latent conservative part of her body that nobody knew about, and all of a sudden she was just a bar- burning conservative that nobody knew was in there.”

    Hmmm. “A latent conservative part of her body.” Of course, the Napster would know all about those latent parts.

  7. Donald Pay 2022-01-19 14:23

    Look, it’s a definition in a larger set of statutes involving sexual offenses, including offenses against children. In order to prosecute these crimes you do have to define what you mean by “sexual contact,” and that requires wading into some delicate areas. It’s not any indication of Republican goofiness on this. In fact, South Dakota has always been touchy about reigning in male privilege when it comes to men’s “rights” over women’s bodies. Duhamel’s bill improves SD statutes, but it should go more toward the federal definition. The intent of stroking someone’s inner thigh may be sexual or or it may just be to watch them being humiliated. Either way, it’s wrong.

  8. John Dale 2022-01-19 14:52

    Dear Loren;

    This post is about sex and it was written by a non-Republican.

    Get some help.


  9. Bob Newland 2022-01-19 14:54

    I’m surprised Duhamel wants to allow consensual touching, at least without a license.

  10. John Dale 2022-01-19 14:56


    “wading into some delicate areas” – nice.

    Given biological norms as mentioned, if it is not appropriate to stroke a woman’s thigh without permission (not sure how this works when a woman and a man are coming together without words and she would like that or he would), then it is not appropriate to wear Yoga pants. You have to acknowledge, not every woman who wears yoga pants is going to engender sexual cognitive processes, but I think my point still stands.

    Your offering proffers a double standard and would therefore make terrible law.


  11. John Dale 2022-01-19 15:02

    Also, no skirts or tight fitting clothing.

    We don’t want everybody getting raped up in here.

    I realize this is controversial, and I am not in favor of it, actually.

    But my intellectual honesty requires me to acknowledge the possibility that wearing a short shirt and showing boob is as stimulating to the sexual tendencies of a man as rubbing a thigh or perhaps just a really nice close hug. They are not the same, but they belong in the same conversation.

    If you don’t want your men running around all horny, dress like a lady.

    But we know there are a lot of people out there who weaponize their own sexuality, too, right?

    This is reprehensible, right?

  12. John Dale 2022-01-19 15:05

    According to someone who is an expert, showing breasts (part or whole, imprint or otherwise), inner thighs (yoga or other really tight fitting pants), labia (camel toe), etc. causes immediate stimulation of the male genetalia.

    If we want to calm men down sexually, more than trying to pass legislation, we should teach women about biology and ask that they not run around triggering pseudo erections in the men around them.

    Informed consent delivered.

  13. larry kurtz 2022-01-19 15:09

    Mrs. Noem has never supported the Violence Against Women Act but anyone who believes she’s never been a victim of sexual harassment or unwanted touching is delusional.

    She has since been fingered for a fling with Trump henchman, Corey Lewandowski. Is she compliant, infidelitous, simply jaded or all the above?

  14. Arlo Blundt 2022-01-19 15:16

    Well…I recall “Nancy Reagan’s Dating Do’s and Don’ts” in the National Lampoon’s “Pornography: Threat or Menace” issue back in 1975. Apparently Ms. Duhamel and John Dale remember this memorable issue as well.

  15. Loren 2022-01-19 15:28

    Dear John (if only…),

    This article written by a non-Republican is about Republicans and their fixation with sexual matters. Are you sure I’m the one that needs to get some help. You sound a bit tense yourself. :-)

  16. Mark Anderson 2022-01-19 15:50

    John Dale, what is it about Yoga pants that bother you? Do they look too bare, or just too much Boo-Boo?

  17. M 2022-01-19 16:29

    This bill is not about what women wear or don’t wear. It’s about everyone keeping their hands to themselves and their peckers in their pants. If there are female predators in SD, yes then men’s nipples need protection. I assume it’s a huge problem here that Republicans have a hard time talking about because many of them are in denial about what criminal sexual contact is. Heck, look at Trump, a classic sexual predator and he got away with all of it.

  18. Eve Fisher 2022-01-19 17:03

    Apparently Mr. Dale has yet to learn that men can actually practice self-control. And should. If you can keep from killing your irritating neighbors, you can keep from raping a woman in yoga pants.

  19. mike from iowa 2022-01-19 17:43

    Noem could lead by example if she wanted. She could replace skin tight blue jeans with a canvas Muumuu from Fort Dodge Tent and Awning when she parades around on her horse.

  20. Porter Lansing 2022-01-19 18:11

    John Dale has released proof that’s he’s so sexually frustrated he needs to expound his limited knowledge of women, to women readers.
    Imagine the laughter among them.
    Stay away from male children John.
    There’s nothing you think you know that should be passed on to anyone.

  21. Francis Schaffer 2022-01-19 19:29

    ‘Inner thighs’ is going to catch clergy.

  22. Donald Pay 2022-01-19 21:08

    Not sure what John Dale’s point is. Clothing worn by a woman has nothing to do with sexual contact or the sexual offenses statute. I don’t know about you, but for me context means a lot.

  23. grudznick 2022-01-19 22:06

    grudznick doesn’t attend church except when some of my really old friends die, but I have never hear the churchers talk about inner thighs. Is this a new movement amongst the modern pastors of faith? It seems to go against the overgodders like Mr. Haugaard, or even Ms. Taffy who often shows her inner thighs at the legislatures.

  24. John Dale 2022-01-20 07:37

    Hey – my eyes are up here.

  25. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-01-20 08:01

    John Dale, grow up, and stop being a sexist. What we wear has nothing to do with legal boundaries and the proper respect we must accord to our fellow humans.

  26. John Dale 2022-01-20 08:51

    Cory – you think I’m sexist.

    Porter thinks I’m sexually frustrated (a real cheap shot from a position of ignorance).

    The adults in the room will read the science I provided and realize that this is another time wasting wedge issue designed to make people fight (men and women) while taking more of their freedoms.

    It’s like how the FEC doesn’t do a good job protecting the ballot box when push comes to shove, in my opinion.

    Categorically, you are incorrect.

    Dress codes are subject to legal considerations, and should be included to provide balance in the proposed legislation which disproportionately favors one of the two genders because of long standing and not disputed biological norms.

    Get your heads in the game.

  27. John Dale 2022-01-20 08:54

    I don’t want the legislature looking at buttocks and thighs on company time.

    Also, it is important to understand the emphasis, so I’ll capitalize for clarity.

    Hey, my EYES are up here!

    It is not sexual frustration to be given an unwanted erection from someone dressing pornographically (this is human biology, it is SCIENCE, it is FACT).

  28. larry kurtz 2022-01-20 09:54

    Governor Kristi Noem is a former Snow Queen who convinced her own daughters to compete in beauty contests.

    “Unsafe. Unacceptable. Hyper-masculine. Sexualized. Dirty.” That’s how the Aberdeen American News board and how women have described the legislative session in Pierre.

  29. Jake 2022-01-20 10:20

    Wish John Dale would attempt a blog of his own-instead of taking up so much of Cory’s space with his BS.

  30. Caleb 2022-01-20 10:29

    John, I’ve attended yoga classes for over a decade, most often being the only man in the room. In many of them, women were wearing even more revealing clothing than you describe, such as shorts and minimal tank tops. Even so, suffering erections has been no problem in such classes.

    Besides, even when I suffer unwanted erections and strong sexual desire, I am not incapable of keeping my hands to myself.

    Please stop believing in such a false moral equivalence, and spend more time contemplating what “pornographic” actually means.

  31. Ryan 2022-01-20 10:57

    you guys are suffering from erections? am i doing this wrong? they’re great!

  32. jerry 2022-01-20 11:17

    Grandstanding by Duhamel is just more white supremacy. Next up will be demanding that the national anthem be played at sporting events or else you get fined and made to take the bar exam.

  33. cibvet 2022-01-20 11:25

    John Dale–If you suffer from an unwanted erection, just use your dominate hand for relief and keep your hands to yourself.
    Being a degenerate does not improve society. I don’t care where your eyes are, and I say again, keep your hands to yourself

  34. Francis Schaffer 2022-01-21 11:21

    Churchers never did talk about ‘inner thighs’. That is how many victims(survivors) of rape by clergy described the beginning of the grooming process. Of course, only those who survived to tell their story describe this.

  35. DaveFN 2022-01-21 23:08

    John Dale

    “men activated by sight, women by touch”

    Your gender stereotypes do nothing but support your own opinions. You are stuck in a box of your own making.

  36. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-01-22 07:04

    “activated by sight”—funny use of passive voice. Sexual contact is an action, initiated by the toucher. No matter what we see, we decide whether we are going to lay hands on someone else. It doesn’t matter what a crime victim is wearing; if you touch someone else’s private places (which, per Senate Judiciary’s 6–0 vote Thursday, should include buttocks and inner thighs), without consent, you are committing a crime.

    By the way, touch does a lot more for me than sight. In John Dale’s world, I must be a woman. Quick, ban me from playing basketball….

  37. Francis Schaffer 2022-01-22 11:32

    It also applies to those who cannot give consent to be touched in a sexual way. Clergy have continued to target those who cannot give consent and can be shamed into silence.

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